HDMI Unveils “Alternate Mode” for USB Type-C Connector

HDMI Licensing has today announced the launch of a new HDMI Alternate Mode or ‘Alt Mode’ for the USB Type-C connector, which will allow HDMI-enabled source devices to use a USB Type-C connector to directly connect to HDMI-enabled displays, delivering native HDMI signals over a simple cable without any adapters or dongles. 

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The HDMI 1.4b Alt-Mode on USB Type-C Specification is now available to all HDMI Adopters at hdmi.org. It will support resolutions up to 4K, Audio Return Channel (ARC), 3D, HDMI Ethernet Channel, and Consumer Electronic Control (CEC). 

“The USB Type-C connector is gaining traction in the mobile and PC markets,” said Rob Tobias, president of HDMI Licensing, LLC. “Consumers expect to easily connect these devices to displays with a USB Type-C to HDMI cable and utilize the capabilities and features of native HDMI. This specification will also result in more source devices incorporating HDMI. HDMI continues to evolve to meet the needs of the over 1,600 worldwide adopters making HDMI products, and grow upon the nearly six billion HDMI devices shipped.”

The HDMI cable will utilize the USB Type-C connector on the source side and any HDMI connector on the display side. Unlike the other Alt Mode display technologies which require various adapters or dongles to connect to HDMI displays, HDMI Alt Mode enables an easy connection via a simple USB Type-C to HDMI cable. 

In 2016, over 290 million HDMI-enabled display devices are expected to ship, including projectors, monitors and 100 percent of flat panel TVs.